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This morning, KYES aired my new interview with Judy Klein (author of Miracle Man). She is a mother who has been praying in the trenches a very long time, through a host of trials and diverse challenges. Thus, her new book, Mary's Way, is fantastic--a tremendous resource for mothers of all ages--and available for preorder at her site, Memorare Ministries. There you'll find ordering information and links to her other work, which is a breath of fresh air for women! I'll post a link as soon as the show makes it to the archives, but in the meantime you can peruse her blog and enjoy all she has to offer. Continue reading
Posted Aug 13, 2016 at feminine-genius
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Today's reading reminded us that we must all be like little children in order to come to God: The disciples approached Jesus and said, “Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?” He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said, “Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me (Matthew 18). We had a lovely anecdote this morning at Mass. Father related a story from his previous parish, in which a little boy was invited to bring the Christ Child up to the crèche at the Midnight Mass. He was so excited. But when the moment came and he was handed the figure, he began to cry. "Why are you crying?" asked Father. "I thought it was going to be the real Baby Jesus," was the answer. All things are considered possible with a child-like heart. Continue reading
Posted Aug 9, 2016 at feminine-genius
Hosting the radio show "Exploring the Feminine Genius" is such a privilege! I had the pleasure of discussing prayer with Connie Rossini, whose website is Contemplative Homeschooling. There you will find all of her books and great tips on how to not only be a better pray-er, but how to bring that leaven into the lives of your family members. Connie's interview is here. Lisa Mladinich interview is here. She is the author of True Radiance: Finding Grace in the Second Half of Life. Her author page at Amazon tells more about her. And here is Shalom TV! Continue reading
Posted Aug 2, 2016 at feminine-genius
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I'll be discussing this article this morning with John Harper on Relevant Radio's Morning Air (9:30am EST). With all due respect, in winning so many pro-life battles, we may have [temporarily] lost the war, and we cannot recover until we acknowledge the root of the lie: If you look at this chaos in terms of cultural Marxism, it becomes clear, especially as we review the stages of confrontation specific to the pro-life movement. The first battle was enormous and urgent -- to save the life of the child. It took years, but technology was on our side. Education about fetal development was key, and what fetal models did at the outset, the ultrasound perfected, so that there are very few people who have not seen the marvelous images of the unborn child: they are in scrap books, on refrigerators, and even in a handful of television commercials -- this is a tremendous a victory for life! The second battle was for motherhood, which was to underscore the strength of women everywhere, to show that they were strong enough to handle pregnancy in a host of adverse circumstances: while still in school, while working stressful jobs, after having suffered abuse or... Continue reading
Posted Aug 2, 2016 at feminine-genius
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This is an important reminder on the reasons why drafting women will be disastrous: Unchanging physical differences between the sexes will always render women at a stark disadvantage in offensive kill missions. In the Marines’ testing, women suffered 2-6 times the injuries of their male counterparts. Active-duty women average 2-10 times the injuries compared to men before even attempting to achieve men’s standards or the combat arms’ much more grueling demands. It should go without saying that higher rates of injury are a liability to units that have to endure and withstand the toughest physical demands as they hunt and kill our enemies. Drafting women for this will result in much higher turnover, weakened combat effectiveness and fewer of both men and women coming home alive and victorious against our enemies. Even when the best women were paired with men in a recent Marine integration study, the results showed that readiness, effectiveness, and success rates plummeted, not to mention the women sustained far greater injuries. One might ponder the real strategy of putting women into combat: the prospect of dead mothers will be a deterrent to any battle; diminished fighting capacity will cause the CIC to reconsider many deployments; and... Continue reading
Posted Jun 7, 2016 at feminine-genius
This is an important piece by Stella Morabito, who is an expert in agitprop: The transgender movement has never been about “gender.” It’s all about sex. Sex is the real target. “Gender” is merely the politicized linguistic vehicle that facilitates a legal ban on sex distinctions. There aren’t a whole lot of dots to connect to uncover the logic of where this leads: if you abolish sex distinctions in law, you can abolish state recognition of biological family ties, and the state can regulate personal relationships and consolidate power as never before. I had the privilege of meeting Stella last week, and hearing her explain how propaganda works. Its goal is to: prevent independent thought; mobilise the masses; and build conformity. If anyone has any doubts as to these goals, he simply needs to watch these bright young things (here and here). But - here's the kicker - when the propaganda is light years away from reality, then it will take enormous force to keep the ideology in place. Since gender ideology only exists in the mind (and note that the students filmed above were happy to let the average-height male Caucasian interviewer identify as a 6'5" Chinese woman if... Continue reading
Posted Jun 7, 2016 at feminine-genius
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This is the first part of a two-part conversation with Dr Michelle Cretella, the president of the American College of Pediatricians. American College of Pediatricians Courage Mercatornet article: Gender Ideology = Child Abuse UPDATE: this is part two of the conversation with Dr Cretella Continue reading
Posted Jun 7, 2016 at feminine-genius
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Peters Here is the link to a lovely conversation with Dr Danielle Peters, who is a member of the Secular Institute of the Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary, and a research fellow at the Institute for Church Life at Notre Dame University, IN. She obtained her MA in theology from Sacred Heart Seminary in Wisconsin and her STL and STD from the International Marian Research Institute (IMRI) in Dayton OH. Her former assignments include professor and coordinator of academic programs at the Pontifical International Marian Research Institute (IMRI) in Dayton, OH, the Athenaeum in Cincinnati, OH, and employment at the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in the Vatican. The Schoenstatt prayer to the Blessed Mother that she recited is as follows: Let us walk like you through life Let us mirror you forever Strong and noble; meek and mild Peace and love be our endeavor Walk in us through our world Make it ready for the Lord She is the author of Ecce educatrix tua: the role of the Blessed Virgin Mary for a pedagogy of holiness in the thought of John Paul II and Father Joseph Kentenich, numerous articles, and is a regular contributor to the Church Life... Continue reading
Posted May 4, 2016 at feminine-genius
That is not a phrase commonly heard when mortal illness strikes, but Ruth Lasseter explains beautifully how her family dealt with the departure of a beloved husband, father, and grandfather. And here is a link to the Catholic Textbook Project on which Ruth and Rollin (and many others) collaborated -- highly recommended! Ruth Lasseter Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2016 at feminine-genius
This morning's interview on Relevant Radio (second half of the hour) is here Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2016 at feminine-genius
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I'm waiting for the archive of the interview to become available, but for those interested in Dale's work, let me give you some links: Her blog is here, and her books are The Gender Agenda and One Man, One Woman. I have also referenced her thoughts elsewhere on this blog: Her meeting with Cardinal Ratzinger SSA as mental illness Cardinal O'Malley praising her work with Courage. Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2016 at feminine-genius
Just to let you know, I'll be speaking at Bishop Stang high school in Dartmouth, MA on April 9th at a conference sponsored by the Franciscan Friars of the Immaculate. The theme is "A Light in the Darkness" and the link is here; more importantly, the event will support their radio station, Radio Cor Mariae (an EWTN affiliate). The conference fee includes lunch and an opportunity to meet many other Catholics in the area. Should be a great day -- join us! Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2016 at feminine-genius
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From today's Office (from the life of Saint Frances of Rome by Mary Magdalene Anguillaria, superior of the Oblates of the Tower of Specchi Cap 6-7: Acta Sanctorum Martii 2, 188-189): The patience and charity of Saint Frances God not only tested the patience of Frances with respect to her material wealth, but, as I have said before and will reiterate, he also tested her own body in a variety of ways, especially through long and serious illnesses which she had to undergo. And yet no one ever observed in her a tendency toward impatience. She never exhibited any displeasure when she complied with an order, no matter how foolish. Through the premature deaths of her sons whom she loved dearly, Frances proved her constancy. With peace of soul she always reconciled herself to the will of God and gave him thanks for all that happened. With the same constancy she endured the slander of those who abused and reviled her and her way of life. She did not show the least hint of aversion toward them, even though she knew that they judged her rashly and spoke falsely of her way of life. Rather, returning good for evil, she... Continue reading
Posted Mar 9, 2016 at feminine-genius
This Saturday, 27 February, I'll be the guest of the Catholic Daughters of St. Matthew where I'll be offering a retreat for women from 10am to 3:30pm. There will be three talks, opportunity for Confession, lunch and Rosary, and we'll end with the recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet. Join us if you're in the area -- more information here. Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2016 at feminine-genius
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Hundreds of millions of girls worldwide undergo a mutilation of their genitals based on both religion and tradition. The religious component is related to somewhat obscure Muslim ahadith, which say: Abu al- Malih ibn `Usama's father relates that the Prophet said: "Circumcision is a law for men and a preservation of honour for women" (Ahmad Ibn Hanbal 5:75; Abu Dawud, Adab 167); Narrated Umm Atiyyah al-Ansariyyah: A woman used to perform circumcision in Medina. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said to her: Do not cut severely as that is better for a woman and more desirable for a husband (Abu Dawud 41:5251); There is another hadith (which we'll leave aside because of the explicit content -- common to Islamic discussions of marital relations) and it is equally firm, and then there is the Reliance of the Traveller, on which Shari'a law is based: e4.3 Circumcision is obligatory (for every male and female) by cutting off the piece of skin on the glans of the penis of the male, but circumcision of the female is by cutting out the clitoris (this is called Hufaad). Whether parents can name the specific religious source or not, the tradition has taken hold, and... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2016 at feminine-genius
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I had a lovely discussion with Sue Brinkmann, the founder of Young Women of Grace, a tremendous program for Catholic girls ages 12 to 18 (and beyond, really!) I cannot recommend it highly enough -- it's beautiful, chock-full of very good information, profiles of young saints, catechesis, and inspiration. Listen to the interview to see how you can introduce the program in your area, or simply buy a copy for the young lady in your life! Listen here: Brinkmann Continue reading
Posted Feb 22, 2016 at feminine-genius
Before Black History Month entirely escapes, I'd like to point you to a very well-done two-part presentation on Mary Seacole, a contemporary of Florence Nightengale who had the same interests and success: I admire her resilience, her fortitude, and her unflagging spirit. We all face obstacles -- they simply reveal our character. This woman was amazing, and a role model for any young woman of any "colour." Continue reading
Posted Feb 22, 2016 at feminine-genius
UPDATE: this old post has been updated to consider the current question about contraception as it relates to the Zika virus and the pope's latest comments. There was intense discussion about the 2007 statement of the Connecticut Bishop's in regard to the availability of Plan B at Catholic hospitals, which is as follows: The Catholic Bishops of Connecticut, joined by the leaders of the Catholic hospitals in the State, issue the following statement regarding the administration of Plan B in Catholic hospitals to victims of rape: The four Catholic hospitals in the State of Connecticut remain committed to providing competent and compassionate care to victims of rape. In accordance with Catholic moral teaching, these hospitals provide emergency contraception after appropriate testing. Under the existing hospital protocols, this includes a pregnancy test and an ovulation test. Catholic moral teaching is adamantly opposed to abortion, but not to emergency contraception for victims of rape. This past spring the Governor signed into a law “An Act Concerning Compassionate Care for Victims of Sexual Assault,” passed by the State Legislature. It does not allow medical professionals to take into account the results of the ovulation test. The Bishops and other Catholic health care leaders... Continue reading
Posted Feb 18, 2016 at feminine-genius
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I thoroughly enjoyed a two-part conversation with Mary-Eileen Russell on Downton Abbey -- NOT the plot per se (so no spoilers!) but on the lives of women in the early part of the 20th century. There is so much to unpack, both upstairs and downstairs, but a good understanding of history allows us to consider the world at the cusp of the women's movement -- and what drove it. Part One is here: Russell Part One on EFG Part Two is here: Russell Part Two on EFG And all the good work of Mary-Eileen can be found here and here (Kindly note: her nom de plume is Elena Maria Vidal.) Her books are great (my review here) so enjoy! Continue reading
Posted Feb 18, 2016 at feminine-genius
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Previously, one could posit that "only a barbaric nation kills its babies in the name of choice," but now we have another accusation that is related and just as foreboding: "Only a barbaric nation drafts its mothers and daughters into combat." Such a policy inverts natural law and the rules that have grounded our civilization for thousands of years. Men should protect women. They should not shelter behind mothers and daughters. Indeed, we see this reality every time there is a mass shooting. Boyfriends throw themselves over girlfriends, and even strangers and acquaintances often give themselves up to save the woman closest to them. Who can forget the story of 45-year-old Shannon Johnson wrapping his arms around 27-year-old Denise Peraza and declaring “I got you” before falling to the San Bernardino shooters’ bullets? Ground combat is barbaric. Even today, men grapple with men, killing each other with anything they can find. Returning veterans describe countless incidents of hand-to-hand combat with jihadists ... That is war. It is not a video game. It is not a movie, where young Hollywood starlets karate-kick their way through masses of inept thugs and goons. When we order women into ground combat, we are ordering... Continue reading
Posted Feb 9, 2016 at feminine-genius
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Yes, I'm thrilled to have been invited to offer a weekly radio show on KYES in St Cloud, MN (an affiliate of Relevant Radio). Exploring the Feminine Genius airs on Saturday mornings, and the latest show can be found here. I thoroughly enjoyed chatting with Anne Merwin, a convert and author who wrote Elizabeth Ann Seton for Daughters of Saint Paul. The marvel is how the life of Mrs Merwin and that of the saint shared so many parallels! The book is part of the DSP "Saints By Our Side" series, and this one offers both a very good introduction to Elizabeth Anne Seton and many meditative insights that will enrich any reader. Kindly spread the word, and for those who are not in the St Cloud region of the planet, the show may be streamed online (and of course I'll be reminding you of new shows and how to listen to archived materials). Pop this one in your listening device and be inspired as you live the feminine genius in your very own sliver of the world. Continue reading
Posted Feb 1, 2016 at feminine-genius
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There is a story in Bloomberg today about a fashion trend for men: women's wear [sigh]. Now we all know that these clothing items are outliers, and we won't be seeing them in many places where normal people go, but the trend is there all the same. The point is to knock down barriers, plant perverse seeds, and influence the entertainment industry -- which trickles into our homes like a poisoned well. As always, public tastes are dictated in large part by celebrities; movie stars, musicians, and athletes have a large say in how younger generations shop and dress. For every Bowie and Jagger in the 1970s, there is a Jared Leto or Kanye West wearing a skirt on stage in 2015. But don't expect to see NBA or NFL stars getting into the androgyny arena quite yet. “The Kanyes, Pharrells, Jared Letos, and one of my favorites, Lapo Elkanns of the world are gents I love seeing push androgynous boundaries," explains Rachel Johnson, a stylist who dresses such pro athletes as Amar'e Stoudemire and Victor Cruz. Some department stores have set aside space for androgynous clothes, but they haven't found much success yet, just an expensive way to tweak... Continue reading
Posted Aug 7, 2015 at feminine-genius
Sorry to be so blunt, but here we have a horrific tragedy and a great need for prayer: Mutlu Kaya, 19, from the conservative region of Diyarbakir in the Kurdish-majority south-east of of the country, had reportedly received death threats after appearing on the show. Kaya was attacked at her home in Ergani district in the early hours of Monday, Dogan news agency reported. The assailant reportedly fired a bullet into the house through a back window in the garden. The victim had been appearing on Sesi Çok Güzel, a show similar to Britain’s Got Talent. Her mentor is Sibel Can, one of Turkey’s best-known folk-pop singers. This is her performance: And here is another sweet song -- so sweet that her mama weeps: Bless this dear girl (who was shot as she was practicing in the home) -- and prayers for a full recovery. ADDENDUM: a little added context from the Guardian The Kurdish majority southeast of Turkey is known for its strongly conservative values, with women expected to perform a traditional role. The attack on Mutlu comes at a time of intensifying anger in Turkey over the extent of violence against women, with hundreds of wives killed by... Continue reading
Posted May 18, 2015 at feminine-genius
As upsetting as the news is surrounding the women rescued from the hands of Boko Haram, it appears to be a classic case of Stockholm syndrome, in which a captive is indoctrinated to the degree that he or she adopts the mindset of the captors. Some of the nearly 300 girls and women freed by Nigeria's military from the forest stronghold of Boko Haram were so transformed by their captivity that they opened fire on their rescuers, and experts said Wednesday they would need intensive psychological treatment... [and] further screening was needed before their identities could be determined. "The processing is continuing, it involves a lot of things because most of them are traumatized and you have got to put them in a psychological frame of mind to extract information from them," Usman said. A counselor who has treated other women freed from Boko Haram captivity said some had become indoctrinated into believing the group's Islamic extremist ideology, while others had established strong emotional attachments to militants they had been forced to marry. Some of the about 90 women and girls freed by the army four months ago in Yobe state, for example, had upset their community on their return... Continue reading
Posted Apr 30, 2015 at feminine-genius
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Sashimani Devi was the last of the ritual temple dancers, whose vocation stems back to the 12th century. At the age of three. she was left at the temple by her parents, and the women there raised her and taught her what she needed to know. The Hindu god Jagannath, an avatar, or incarnation, of Vishnu, gives his name to the English term juggernaut, inspired by a festival in which the image of the god is pulled along the streets in a huge, ornately carved wooden temple cart. Traditionally, devotees would sometimes cast themselves under its wheels in the hope of freeing themselves from the cycle of death and rebirth. Devadasis were girls who were given to the temple by their families during childhood to be the mortal wives of the god. After their “marriage” to Jagannath their duties included performing ritual baths and private songs and dances at the god’s bedtime, dressed in special jewellery and bedecked with flowers. During and after the colonial era, however, the devadasi system fell into disrepute, owing to the corruption of the practice in other parts of India, where devadasis became, in effect, prostitutes for upper caste temple patrons. By contrast the devadasis... Continue reading
Posted Apr 22, 2015 at feminine-genius